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The Choices are Many but What is the Best Oven Type?
To start with, let’s examine the different types that are available when we talk about oven.
When someone mentions about oven, 4 out of 5 chances, it refers either to microwave oven or toaster oven. These two types of oven alone probably make up about 90% of the oven selections that we see being displayed on the shelves of most department stores.
Outdoor oven is another type of oven that is not as widely used compared to microwave and toaster oven. Unless you enjoy inviting friends for a garden barbecue party or you have a heirloom pizza recipe that taste ten times better than what the local pizza establishments are offering, an outdoor oven is definitely not something that will occur naturally to you.
Before you start going through the list of the best microwave ovens, there are few basic things you need to take note of.
Temperature control and distribution is probably the most important factor to consider. Almost every microwave oven comes with temperature control but how it is being done really matters. There are 2 techniques commonly used in most microwave ovens sold in the market today.
The first, which is the conventional way, regulates temperature by adjusting the percentage of ON / OFF time. Most models come with at least 3 levels of power setting (Low, Medium and High) while the best microwave ovens usually come with more. It depends on the setting that you’re using. For illustration purpose say the low setting gives you 50% of the heating power. This means that the magnetron tube (that generates the electromagnetic wave) will be in ON state only 50% of the time and in OFF state for the remaining time.
The second is the inverter way, a technology that has recently been invented by Panasonic. Using this approach, your magnetron tube will be in ON state all the time regardless the power setting. What the microwave inverter technology does is to adjust the wave generated which results in different heating strength.
One problem commonly experienced by many oven users is the uneven textures and temperatures that they get with microwave heating. The inverter technology is supposed to be the answer to this problem.
Aside from the heating mechanism, such other features as the dial, timing granularity and interior lightings are little details that separate the mediocre from the great microwave ovens. These are features you will start to appreciate only once you use your oven often enough.
Toaster oven does jobs that microwave oven fails to do. But talking about toaster ovens, there are two basic types: bread toaster and well, the real toaster ovens. The difference is obvious from their names alone. One is purely for toasting your breads while the others are designed for general purpose use.
Temperature distribution and consistency is the most common concern among toaster oven users. Certain types of food require uniform heating throughout. Certain types of food require you to adjust the top and bottom heat at the different stage of the cooking or baking process.
That is why the best toaster ovens are usually equipped with top and bottom heating elements. You can turn either or both on at the same time, depending on what you need. Make sure you don’t skip the manuals that come with your oven purchase.
If you need to bake with uniform consistency throughout, the best oven you should get is the convection oven rather than just a normal toaster oven. What differentiates convection ovens from the normal toasting ovens is the fan. The fan is used to circulate the hot air around the food.
By going through toaster oven reviews, you will learn there are at least three benefits you get with the fan-assisted air circulation. First, it allows your food to cook more evenly. Second, it reduces the cooking time needed. Third, it reduces the temperature required to cook your food.
The last type of oven is the least commonly seen among the three. It is the outdoor oven. While microwave and toaster are seen as necessities by most oven users, having the best oven for outdoor use is seen more of a luxury.
First, outdoor oven requires you to have a big yard or garden. Second, you frequently invite friends and close relatives for garden party. Third, you enjoy baking your own pizza or meat grilling. Only then, you’ll start looking for outdoor oven reviews and wonder which oven is going to make the best pizza.
Outdoor oven does not usually come cheap and the range of options available is also much lesser compared to what you get for microwave and toaster. It can be seen as both good and bad.
The lack of options means that picking the best outdoor oven will be much more straightforward. However, given the small market it is, so does the number of innovation. This means that even the best oven designed for outdoor use may not even come close to perfection.
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